Kia wants piece of Korean performance pie, too; plans 4-door GT coupe production for 2016

While Toyota is hemming and hawing over a four-door Scion FR-R, Kia is reportedly going ahead with it’s own version: a 2016 production version of GT concept four-door coupe.

The rear-wheel drive concept you see above was first unveiled at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. Since we’d not heard anything more of the sporty Korean coupe. We assumed nothing would come of it.

Today we learn that Kia has been secretly pondering the gorgeous four-door coupe for some time now and plans to send the thing into production for 2016.

Speaking with Auto Express, Kia’s vice-president of overseas marketing, Soon-Nam Lee, said: “We have plans to build a GT – we spoke about it at our global marketing conference in Singapore. We’ll be mainly targeting the end of 2016 or early 2017.”

Although the GT concept is a rear-drive car, the production version will likely be front-wheel drive, which is rather disappointing.

According to Auto Express, Kia is keen to become the sportier side of the Hyundai/Kia pairing.

This is rather funny, as we it seems Hyundai is thinking the same thing of itself. Hyundai, Kia’s sister brand, recently decided to found a performance-oriented sub-brand aimed to attract younger buyers.

And from the surface, it seems Hyundai might win-out. Despite some truly brilliant front-wheel drive cars hitting the market recently, rear-wheel drive is the quickest way to make a sporty sedan or coupe.

Hyundai already has three rear-drive models: The Equus, Genesis, and Genesis Coupe. Kia has zero rear-drivers on sale in the U.S. So starting a head-to-head sporty war with Hyundai immediately seems like a losing proposition for Kia.

Then if we take into account the other like-minded import four-door sports coupe concepts, I’d pick the FR-S four-door coupe over the Kia GT every day of the week.

So will this Kia GT four-door coupe come to fruition? We’ll have to wait and see. Personally, I think Kia would be better suited to leaving the sportiness to Hyundai’s new sub-brand and lean instead on making accessible, youthful cars like it does today.


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